Friday, February 15, 2013

Shooting Blind: Winter Flowers seen from below

I've recently posted some shots (here and here) of flowers that were starting to blossom in the middle of winter. We've had roller coaster temperatures in Raleigh for the past month and a half. Hard freezes and spring-like breezes. Not only have daffodils gone crazy all over the area, but some less hardy varieties have also budded. Today some of those opened, so I did a quick, impromptu photo session.

Due, perhaps, to the weather, the stalks were droopy, and the prettiest flower was facing more toward the ground than to the side. It seemed obvious that the best approach would be with the camera at ground level, looking up. The second immediate thought was that I should use a fisheye lens (one yielding a 180ยบ angle of view across the diagonal) to get some drama out of the compositional possibilities. I also knew I would need some supplemental light from a low source to bring out the color and details of the downward facing bloom. I used a flash through a spheroid diffuser.

There are quite a few digital cameras with articulated LCDs that allow one to compose an image while viewing from below, above, or to the side of the camera back. I was using one that doesn't permit that. The Canon 5D Mark III has other advantages that made this shot possible, including a "full frame" sensor that captures the entire view of the 15mm fisheye lens. When a scene is relatively static, I can shoot repeatedly until everything looks the way I want it to. So, I shot "blind", trying to visualize the composition I would get from ground level, and after a few shots, I was satisfied that I'd caught the hoped for effect. Here it is:



  1. That's how small animals see the world!! This is beautiful!!!

  2. Ok, you got your beard wet taking this one, didn't you? Beautiful!

  3. The flowers are so gorgeous and you framed them vividly and in a startling way! Bravo!!

    1. Thank you, and thanks for returning to an "old" post to comment!


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